By: Joyce Russell, NWI Times
July 28, 2018
VALPARAISO — The city’s transportation system is getting a new operator, but riders won’t notice the difference.
The Board of Works on Friday awarded a contract to Royal Excursion, of Mishawaka, Indiana, to operate the Vline and ChicaGo Dash bus systems. Planning director Tyler Kent said the company is familiar with the area and the city has used buses from the company when there has been a break down or other issue. The cost to the city will be $210 per service hour for the ChicaGo Dash service to Chicago and $45 per service hour for the V-Line local transportation system. The new provider should take over services on Sept. 1. The previous provider, Ride Right Transportation of St. Louis, Missouri, did not bid on the contract. Transportation manager Don Lorntzen said riders will know no difference between the two companies. The same drivers will be utilize and no changes are expected.
The board also awarded a contract for the reconstruction of Academy Street.
The bid went to Gariup Construction of Gary for $449,800. Funding will come both from the city and the utility department. The project will include reconstruction the street from Park Avenue to Academy Street’s dead end and rebuilding the sanitary and storm water sewer systems; installing new curbs and gutters and installing new driveway approaches. Storm and sanitary sewers will be separated in the area as part of the project. Construction should begin late summer or early fall.
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